Can You Go Straight To God?
Yes and no. We are told, as we see clearly in Scripture that we are to confess our sins to one another. Thus, the ordinary way we have our grave sins forgiven is through the Sacrament of Confession. Thus, this is the way that Christ has established as the ordinary way to forgive grave (i.e. mortal) sins. But, there are extreme situations where God may forgive grave sins outside of Confession if the person has perfect contrition (sorrow) for their sins, but these are extraordinary.
“When it arises from a love by which God is loved above all else, contrition is called “perfect” (contrition of charity). Such contrition remits venial sins; it also obtains forgiveness of mortal sins if it includes the firm resolution to have recourse to sacramental confession as soon as possible” (CCC 1452).
“If there is a danger of death or if, in the judgment of the diocesan Bishop or of the Episcopal Conference, there is some other grave and pressing need, catholic ministers may lawfully administer these same sacraments to other Christians not in full communion with the catholic Church, who cannot approach a minister of their own community and who spontaneously ask for them, provided that they show the catholic faith in respect of these sacraments and are properly disposed.” (Code of Canon Law, canon 844.4)
- God commanded we confess our sins to one another in the scripture. (James 5:16).
- We receive grace to resist sin through the Sacrament, as well as forgiveness.
- We learn humility by having to confess to another person.
- We receive counsel from the priest.
- We can be comforted hearing the words of absolution.
- Helps give you the strength to forgive others.
- We may not be positive that we have “perfect” contrition without it.
- Assists us to go deep within and think about how we can improve.
- When we realize (again) we are sinners, it is easier to be patient with others.
- Always confidential – what is said in the confessional stays in the confessional.
- No more guilt.
- We are better prepared to receive the Eucharist.
- Forgiveness is an essential part of growing in holiness.
- Our consciences can be better formed.
- If we have mortally sinned, then Confession brings us back into the family of God – The Church as well as restores sanctifying grace in our souls!